Dynamo join United in the Semifinals -- The Houston Dynamo came into tonight's game knowing they had to win by two goals (or one, and penalty kicks), and they were able to pull it off. Despite looking simply awful and overmatched in Costa Rica last week, the Dynamo put on a determined, and exciting effort to best Puntarenas 2-0. The Dynamo did it with spirited play that matched the spirit of the 4,286 full house in College Station.
In goal, Zack Wells was nothing short of spectacular, with three game-saving stops. On the other end, Puntarenas goalkeeper Shane Moody-Orio was equally spectacular, making almost impossible saves on two Dynamo shots, only to see other Dynamo players hustle to the rebound and score, despite Orio's heroics. The first goal was scored by Paul Dalglish off a rebound in front of the net. The second, decisive goal came about a minute after Brian Ching came on as a substitute, when the Belize-native, Orio, got a hand to a seemingly certain goal-scoring header by Ching, deflecting it enough that it hit the post, instead of net. For Houston, though, Kelly Gray pounced on the loose ball and knocked home the series-winning goal.
Tonight's results set up an interesting pair of matchups in the semifinals of the CONCACAF Champions' Cup series, with the MLS' best teams taking on the top teams from the Mexican Primera Division. D.C. United v. Chivas (Club Deportivo Guadalajara), and the Houston Dynamo vs. CF Pachuca.